Capcom have used the Evo 2015 fighting game tournament to reveal new information about Street Fighter V, including the fact that all gameplay-related DLC will be available for free.
Street Fighter V will not use the revised, updated releases that the series is known for to add new content and balance adjustments. Players won't ever need to buy another copy of the game beyond the initial release, with balance and system updates being freely available, and post-launch gameplay related content (like characters) being earnable for free by playing the game.
"Looking back on the Street Fighter IV series, we had always released bundles of content all at once, like with Super Street Fighter IV and Ultra Street Fighter IV. While these one-time updates did revive interest in the series every few years, it was difficult to keep players engaged for long periods of time unless they were competitive," Capcom's Peter Rosas wrote on PlayStation Blog.
"This also punished players who took a break from playing the game, because if they wanted to start again in a few years, they would be forced to purchase an upgrade to join the existing player pool who had already moved on to a new version. On top of that, this old method also forced players to purchase all of the new content, even if only a few characters may have appealed to them."
As they play, Street Fighter V players will earn Fight Money, which can then be used to purchase characters and other content; alternatively, they can purchase Zenny with real money to immediately access post-launch content. Future beta tests will be used to trial and help balance the in-game economy and "ensure it works in a fair way for everyone."
Capcom also revealed that Street Fighter V will have 16 characters at launch, four of whom will be new. Confirmed fighters so far include Ryu, Ken, Chun-Li, Cammy, Birdie, M. Bison, and Nash. Another character will be revealed at Brasil Game Show later this year, with producer Yoshinori Ono teasing Blanka's return, and there are also rumours about the inclusion of Alex and Urien (from Street Fighter 3) and R. Mika and Karin (from Street Fighter Alpha), though these are not confirmed.